Friday, July 27, 2012

It's Movie Night!

I remember it like it was yesterday. It was 1982. I was four years old. It was nighttime and I was wedged between my parents on the couch in our living room. We were watching Wes Craven's Swamp Thing. Cue Adrienne Barbeau's topless scene in the swamp. I turned, looked up at my dad and asked, "Why is she naked, Daddy?" Moments later, I found myself in bed, thus ending my late night movie privileges. My parents reached a new parenting milestone that night. Gone were the days when they could watch "grown-up" movies while I was still awake. My little four year old brain was starting to connect the dots and I was asking questions about the adult situations flashing on the television set. In their defense, Swamp Thing was rated PG. They didn't know there was a skinny dipping scene in swamp water when they said, "Hey! Let's watch Swamp Thing tonight! Terese can watch it... it's only PG." (They didn't have the PG-13 rating back then and Swamp Thing didn't meet the R rating requirements.) Besides, who goes skinny dipping in the swamp?! No one does. Well, no one except Adrienne Barbeau.

Packing for swamp trip: Négligée... check.
Photo Credit:

The Hub and I are movie enthusiasts. Throughout our relationship; pre-marriage, marriage, and before our spawn arrived, we would go to the movies every week. I remember a time or two when we would see every movie playing at the local theater and have to wait several weeks for a new release. We also had Blockbuster cards and would rent multiple movies to watch in the evenings. It wasn't uncommon for us to walk out of a Blockbuster with a comedy, an action adventure, a horror, a musical, and a documentary film in our bag. We watched a lot of great movies. We watched a lot of bad movies, too. We watched animation and slasher movies. We watched everything, no matter the movie rating. 

Photo Credit :
For more info about ratings -

It wasn't until the night that we sat down with his parents (before they were my in-laws and the Hub and I were into our first year of dating) and watched Eyes Wide Shut together, that we took notice of the movie ratings. That was the longest 159 minutes of awkward ever. We agreed not to watch NC-17 movies with them again. (The theatrical version of the movie was R and we didn't notice that the DVD featured the unrated scenes.)

I couldn't look The Hub's dad in the eyes for weeks after  this.
Photo Credit:

Our movie watching has declined dramatically over the last six years. Going to the theater is reserved for special date nights and we probably only go to the movies once or twice a year now. The first movie I watched in a theater after S was born was Peter Jackson's King Kong. S was only a few weeks old at the time. My mother-in-law watched her so we could get out of the house for a few hours. We were so excited. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a bust. When I wasn't crying because some of Kong's facial expressions resembled my newborn's facial expressions, I was dozing off in my seat. We decided to stick with renting movies at home until my hormones and sleep schedule got back on track.

Oh! Wook at the sweet widdle gorilla face!
Photo Credit:

The Hub and I continued to watch movies of any rating for a couple of years after S came along. Most of the time, she would fall asleep in my arms or play with her toys, completely unaware of the movie. Around the age of three, S started asking questions about what was happening on the television and we knew the freedom of any movie, any time was over. It was G/PG movies from then on until the kids were asleep. 

Isn't it funny how that goes? As a child, you are sequestered to the G/PG world. Everything is carefully monitored. Your parents talk to each other using code and spelling out words. Brilliant bad words are replaced with silly alternatives like, "Oh, fudge" and "darn it all to heck!" They cover your eyes to shield you from scenes of violence or nudity. They make you leave the room just when things get interesting. But, don't worry... Everyone lives happily ever after. Then you graduate to PG-13. Oh, the innuendoes! Oh, the explosions! Oh, the slightly colorful language! Oh, the swamp water skinny dipping glory! This is a nice place to hover for a while. You just have to be careful that you don't make a big deal about PG-13 life. The first rule of PG-13 life is that you don't talk about PG-13 life. If you abuse your PG-13 freedom, your parents will think you can't handle it and knock you back down to PG. Then, one fine day, you can proudly show your ID card to the ticket booth guy and buy a pass to the R rated world. Now you can make your own decisions. R stands for "restricted" and restricted you are no longer. It doesn't mean you have to partake in R... but no one can tell you not to now. 

Then you have kids and you're right back to G. You have to sneak your PG-13/R now. You can't be openly excited with anything above a PG around your kids or you'll have some explaining to do. As a kid, I thought my parents were just being lame when they kept me within my appropriate age ratings. Now, I realize that I was the lame one, not my parents. It was my fault that they could only watch campy horror films after I was in bed. I was the weakest link on the maturity chain and everyone else had to suffer. They, not I, should have been the ones to cry, "It's not fair! Just because she can only watch kiddie movies doesn't mean we HAVE to!" Kids don't realize that parents have to follow the rating rules, too. We don't get to pick the movie we might want to watch on family movie night. We have to fast forward through the content that may not be suitable for all viewers, even if it's the "good part." But, we do it because we love our children and we don't want to corrupt their innocent little minds too soon. We don't give them more than they can handle, so to speak. We save it for our date nights. We save it for after the kids are in bed. We are extremely grateful for how amazing the kid movies are now and don't mind watching the latest animated masterpiece from Blue Sky, Pixar, or DreamWorks Studios. We know that one day, the kids will be old enough to join us on the couch and watch any movie, regardless of the rating.

Well, maybe not any movie.

Photo Credit:

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

What Did I Do Today?

During the week, after The Hub comes home from work, we ask each other, "How was your day?" The follow-up question is, "What did you do today?" More often than not, the events of my day are a blur save for a few funny or crazy moments. I've decided to document how I spend my day at home with the kids on a random Tuesday.


Wake up to cold wet nose pressed to my cheek.

Did The Hub feed the dogs? 
Please let there be coffee... please let there be coffee... please let there be coffee...

Let dogs out for potty break. Looks like it's going to rain today. Make mental note to put carpet cleaner shampoo on the shopping list. Feel a monthly migraine coming on. Complain about it to The Hub. Take migraine medicine. Pour cup of coffee and turn on morning news. Kids are still asleep. Kiss The Hub good-bye for the day. Weather report confirms the rain is coming. Cancel all outdoor plans and errands. Decide to make it a "Clean the House" day. Write down my "To Do" list.

                To Do
  1. Unload dishwasher
  2. Clean both bathrooms
  3. Vacuum entire house
  4. Dust
  5. Wash laundry
  6. Fold laundry

Kids wake up. Change B's diaper. Argue that candy is not suitable for breakfast. Win argument. Serve nutritional breakfast. Check email. Freak out for a moment because I think Nathan Fillion tweeted me. He did not. It was a Twitter newsletter which included some of his tweets, none of which were for me. Decide to share this moment of stupidity with my friends.  Tweet picture to Nathan Fillion. Slightly question my sanity.

What's that smell?

Change B's diaper. Send dogs back outside for potty break. Clear cereal bowls from kitchen table. More coffee. Set up cardboard box for rainy day fun for kids. It's not raining... yet.

I told you they love cardboard boxes.

Break up a fight over toy. Slip on puddle of water from knocked over dog bowl. Clean up puddle. Become aware of all the muddy paw prints on the kitchen floor. Can't remember the last time I mopped the floor. Add it to the list. Fold laundry. Swear to myself that I will put it away in a few minutes. Check Twitter to see if I got a response from Nathan Fillion. Nope.

Yes, I still wear my PHS Senior T-shirt.
Like the Hub's "Beer Me" t-shirt? Click Here.

Realize I just spent 20 minutes browsing Pinterest. Kids want something to eat. Argue that candy is not a suitable snack. Win argument. Give nutritious snack. Catch S giving her snack to dogs. Walk past laundry baskets. Repeat promise to put laundry away after I take a shower. 

I bet Nathan Fillion gets a million tweets a day. He'll probably never respond.  He'll probably think it was stupid. It was stupid! That's it. No more posting for me today. I look like a total flake. Good going, Terese, tweet Nathan Fillion to show him what a flake you are. I wonder what he would think if he found out we named our dog Malcolm Reynolds? Wait. Did I shampoo my hair before I put on the conditioner? Damn. WHAT WAS THAT NOISE?!  

Leave shower without shaving legs. Find out that noise was just the kids practicing their yodeling skills.  Get dressed. The girls say they are "SOOOOO hungry!" Walk past laundry baskets. Make lunch. Girls are not that hungry. Realize I am very hungry. Look at phone. Missed The Hub's call while in shower. Call back. He asks if my headache is gone. Remember that I had a headache, but it is gone. Realize I am very jittery from the medicine. Add up all the cups of coffee from this morning. Figure my mental rant in the shower (berating myself about being stupid about Nathan Fillion) might have been caffeine induced. Do not tell The Hub about Nathan Fillion. Already too embarrassed about all the thought that went into the whole situation.

No, you cannot have any candy!

Hear the first thunder clap. Send dogs out for another potty break before the storm hits. Clean up kitchen after lunch. Change another diaper. Tell whiny kids to pick up their toys off the floor. Gather kids on the couch and turn off the television. Cuddle with them and ask B what she wants to do for her 3rd birthday tomorrow. Tell the story of her birth. Leave out gory details. Tell S the story of her birth. Leave out gory details. Tell silly knock, knock jokes.

Sigh. This is nice. I wish I could sit here all day and cuddle with them. Man, it's really raining hard. I wonder if the power will go out. I wouldn't mind it... just for a little while.

Discuss future events leading up to school starting again. Make mental note to go "back to school" shopping. Discover huge wad of chewing gum in B's hair. Admit that I lost the candy battle. Relocate purse containing chewing gum pack to higher shelf. Successfully remove gum from B's hair with minimal cutting.

Hold ice on gum until hard. Gently pull hair off of gum.
 B and I both became impatient with the process and cut the rest of the gum out.

Put washed laundry in the dryer. Walk past folded laundry. Decide to wait to put it away after the next load in the dryer is dry and folded. Rent the new Three Stooges movie for the kids to watch while I work on my "To Do" list. Hear kids laughing. A lot. Too much. Question my parenting choices and have visions of S and B reenacting Larry, Moe, and Curly fights. Pick my battles and continue cleaning the kids' bathroom.

The Hub walks through the door.

He's home early! I'm not done with my list! Oh well. He already knows I'm not OCD Mom.

The girls and I tell him about our day. They enjoyed our cuddle / chat time. They LOVED the movie. Everyone is in good spirits even with the rainy day. The Hub plays with the kids. I put another laundry load in the washer. I walk by the spot where the laundry baskets were all day. They're missing.

Me: Where are the laundry baskets?
The Hub: I moved them to the bedroom.

Out of sight... out of mind. Good man!!

  To Do
  1. Mop kitchen floor
  2. Unload dishwasher
  3. Clean both bathrooms
  4. Vacuum entire house
  5. Dust
  6. Wash laundry
  7. Fold laundry
  8. PUT AWAY LAUNDRY  (Don't judge me.)

All in all, I'd say it was a pretty successful day. What did you do today?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Birthday Wishes of a 30-Something Year Old

It's my birthday! It's my birthday! It's my birthday!

I'm pretty excited about it.

That's right, little me, party down!

I love my birthday. On the first day of July, I flip the calendar page, smile, and say, "Only twelve days til my birthday!" It's not that I'm stoked that I'm a year older, although, you can't really have a birthday without aging another year. It's a Catch-22. My birthdays are celebrated pretty much the same way every year. With the exception of my epic 30th birthday party, my birthdays are quietly celebrated at home with family and a friend or two. When I was a kid, I got to plan out every detail of the day and my parents and sisters had to play along. Oh, the power! I'd wake up to a special breakfast, spend the day with my family doing activities of my choosing, open some presents, eat a special dinner, and then get a birthday cake. The birthday cake was and still is my favorite part of my birthday. Not because I love cake, but because of the birthday candles on my cake. I believe in the magic of birthday wishes. I believe so intensely in the power of the birthday wish that I plan out my wish several days, even weeks, before my birthday. I've done this every birthday for as long as I can remember.

From my Epic 30th Birthday Party.
I had a red solo cup of booze in my hand all night
which lead to my four day hangover.

Because you only get one birthday a year, you have to take this seriously. Birthday wishes need to be specific, yet concise, so you can list them off in your head before the candles melt all over the icing roses. Some people just blow the candles out right after the birthday song ends. They don't close their eyes for a moment. They don't try to get them out in one blow. They just blow out the candles and dig into the cake. I've seen people blow out their candles in the middle of the song. I just look at them in disgust.
There's no way you had enough time to make a wish. I mean, a GOOD wish. You just blew out the candles like it was no big deal. You just wasted a golden opportunity, you fool. No! That's unacceptable. Relight the candles and make a damn wish!
I know this makes me seem a bit crazy to some people. I know that not all birthday wishes come true. But, think of it this way: You can't win the lottery if you don't buy a ticket. Birthday wishes won't come true if you don't wish them.

My First Birthday Wish
See the concentration?!

As I was planning out my wishes for this, my 30-somethingth birthday, I took a moment to think back on all the birthday wishes I've made in my lifetime. My childhood birthday wishes were pretty simple and involved getting a new Barbie Doll. The wishes I made in my teenage years were more crucial. I wished for very important things that I truly believed would change my life and bring ultimate happiness. I still wish for very important things that I truly believe will change my life and bring ultimate happiness, but it's funny how my wishes have changed now that I'm an adult.

My Teen Birthday Wishes vs. My 30-Something Birthday Wishes

Teen: I wish for big boobs.
30-Something: I wish for perky boobs.

Teen: I wish for lots of cool clothes.
30-Something: I wish for less laundry.

Teen: I wish for a later curfew.
30-Something: I wish for an earlier bedtime.

Teen: I wish for clear skin.
30-Something: I wish for less chin hair. (Yeah, I said it.)

Teen: I wish for a super fast sports car.
30-Something: I wish for a fuel efficient, family sedan with extra cup holders and more trunk space.

Teen: I wish for more bills in my pocket so I can go shopping.
30-Something: I wish for less bills in my mailbox.

Teen: I wish I can go to Panama City Beach for Spring Break this year.
30-Something: I wish I can go to a secluded beach as far away from other people as possible.

Teen: I wish for an Old Navy gift certificate.
30-Something: I wish for a Home Depot gift certificate.

Teen: I wish for world peace.
30-Something: I wish for a moment of peace.

Teen: I wish I could go on a date with Johnny Depp.
30-Something: I wish... ahem... moving on.

Teen: I wish my parents would let me dye my hair pink.
30-Something: I wish for less grey and more time between root touch ups.

Teen: I wish I could get on the cast of MTV's The Real World.
30-Something: I wish my neighbors would move.

Teen: I wish that cute boys would ask me out on dates.
30-Something: I wish I could get a date night with The Hub.

Teen: I wish I could go to night clubs and bust some sweet moves on the dance floor.
30-Something: I wish for new hardwood floors for my living room.

Teen: I wish I was a famous actress.
30-Something: I wish I was a best selling author. 

Teen: I wish I was popular.
30-Something: I wish my blog was popular. (Somethings never change...)

See, that's how it's done, folks.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Fourth of July, Fireworks, and Kovtapyroergasoiphobia

Happy 4th of July! There's nothing like the 4th of July... The day when the people of the United States of America come together to celebrate the adoption of the Declaration of Independence. On this day, 236 years ago, we declared our independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain. We sing our national anthem and other patriotic songs with pride. We wave the American flag. We wear red, white, and blue. We thank our soldiers. We watch parades. We grill meat. We drink beer (as any good American should). But, most importantly, we blow stuff up. Fireworks are, by far, my favorite way to celebrate the 4th. I just love watching the bright and colorful explosions light up the night sky. The boom makes my heart jump. It's beautiful. It's powerful. It's worth sitting in traffic for hours to watch a 30 minute pyrotechnics show.

My daughter S said her first word on 4th of July. The Hub and his brothers were setting off small (Georgia legal grade) fireworks in the front yard. He lit a little sparkler and walked by S, who was in my arms. She called out "Dada" and reached for the sparkler. Even though she said dada before she said mama, I was still excited. When S was two years old, I took her to the our town's firework show. The Hub was working the night shift at an emergency animal clinic, so S and I met up with my brother in law and his family. We found a parking space about a 1/2 mile away from the court house lawn. S and I walked hand in hand through the winding streets, people watching, and talking about how excited we both were about seeing some fireworks.

Once the sun set, S and I sat on our blanket and stared into the sky. BOOM! We both jumped, but then, the first explosion always makes me jump. BOOM! S looked around at the crowd. BOOM! S looked back at me. I looked down and noticed an odd expression on her face. If she had a better grasp of the language, I'm sure she would have said:
What the holy hell is going on?! Do you people not see the massive fire balls exploding right over our heads? Why are you just sitting here?! WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE!! 
S jumped out of my lap, grabbed the blanket and yelled, "We go now!" I laughed a bit and said, "Baby, the show is still going on. Don't be scared. It is pretty!" S put on her shoes. "We go home, now. Let's get out of here!" S started walking away from me with such determination, that I had no choice but grab our stuff and follow her. S, fists clenched, moved as fast as her little legs could carry her. Every time another firework exploded in the sky, she picked up speed. S never once looked back. I had to sprint to catch up to her. I grabbed her hand and she lead me back to our car. She knew exactly where we had parked.  She hopped in the car and buckled her own seat belt on the first attempt. She did not relax until we pulled into our driveway. I looked back at her and said, "Okay. We're home." She let out a huge sigh and said, "I don't like fireworks. Never again."

S eventually got over her fear of fireworks. (There's an actual name for the fear of fireworks. It's called Kovtapyroergasoiphobia. See, you learned something new today.) We've seen a few firework shows since then, but she sticks her fingers in her ears and jumps with each explosion. B, on the other hand, loves fireworks... almost as much as I do. This year, we're lighting some sparklers and little noise makers in our front yard. S is perfectly fine with that.